Prune Cordon Apple Trees

Prune Apple Tree

by Garden News |

Cordons can be an easy way to control growth and save space if you want a number of fruit trees in your garden. It simply means a bush or tree with a leading central stem and trained with fruit-bearing sideshoots from it. They grow happily up against a wall, or staked in the open if you prefer, but walled cordons often look better, and the trees get some passive warmth if you choose a house wall.

if you have cordon fruit already, it's time to give trees a trim so you can curb their growth before autumn sets in. Trim down sideshoots over 20cm (10 in) to three leaves above this year's new growth. Sideshoots coming from sideshoots can be trimmed down to one leaf above this year's new growth. Tie in the leader, which, if it has grown too tall, you can prune and treat as a sideshoot.

Plant new cordons in late autumn, but don't train a tip-bearing variety - one that fruits on the tips of stems, as you'll continually be chopping them off and it won't fruit. It's best to get spur-bearers that fruit all the way along the stems. Check the type you're buying, or get advice from the nursery as to what you've got.

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